Weekly discussion: Microsoft says sorry and fixes issues, Here says sorry and doesn’t fix issues (after 5 months) and other news


Microsoft apologizes for OneDrive and Surface issues.

Microsoft has done a (slightly predictable 180) after the backlash on their OneDrive decision swept the internet like a tsunami of rage, with barbs tossed at every OneDrive blogpost, tweet or Facebook post and Microsoft’s credibility thrown into question. The firm now promises to preserve storage for legacy users if the opt-in and apologizes for treating their customers like thieves. The company also sent an apology to their surface users who had been experiencing less than stellar quality experiences on their new Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book products. It’s nice to see a company apologizing for its mistakes,  rather than telling its consumers to use their product right or downplaying the number of users affected.

Here kinda apologizes for their absence on their Windows store

Earlier this week, we wrote an editorial about Here’s shocking treatment of its Windows users. By shocking, we mean Here’s abandonment of its Windows users about 3 months ago. The mapping application vanished from the store with not a hint of an ETA, an active bug or a statement given by Here at all. After a while, Here eventually released an update to the Windows store accidentally which rendered the app inoperable for many users. At that time we sought and received the following statement:

“A technical issue is preventing us from offering the HERE apps in the Windows Store. We are working to resolve the problem and restore the availability of the HERE apps for new users. Until it’s resolved, we recommend that new users take advantage of the pre-loaded Windows Maps app. Right now, we are focused on developing our Android and iOS applications.”

Shortly afterwards, the Here apps were eventually restored to the Windows store for users who already had the apps installed, but new devices like the 950 or 950 XL or even older deives which had just been purchased could not download the apps at all, not even by restoring a backup in some cases.

After we published a scathing editorial on this, Here eventually reached out and posted the following comment on the editorial:

Existing HERE apps users on all Windows platforms will continue to have access to the apps. Working closely with Microsoft, we have corrected technical issues that were preventing some users from updating their HERE apps. If you still experience problems updating the HERE apps, please contact customer care at [email protected] For new users, the HERE apps are temporarily unavailable in the Windows Store due to an issue unrelated to Microsoft. HERE apologizes for any inconvenience and we are working to resolve the situation as soon as possible.

It’s a nice statement, but its also mostly PR speak. But breaking it down, it doesn’t really tell us anything new. We deduced that Here maps were only available for users who already had the app installed, it is plainly obvious that the issue has nothing to do with Microsoft, and they would obviously be working or resolve the issue “as soon as possible” but only as long as it doesn’t interfere with their focus on iOS and Android. The lack of a timeline here is especially concerning, how soon is soon? This month? Next month? Next spring? I understand the logic here, but it would be much easier to be more understanding if Here had issued a statement about this 5 months ago when the issue first surfaced.

Surur’s impressions of the Lumia 950

We’ve reviewed the Lumia 950 before, but Surur just got his, and he was quite excited to write about it. Unsurprisingly enough, he loves his device and had nothing but praise for it in his post.

And right off the bat, I have to say I am impressed with the device.  From a design point of view, from the front it really looks like any other high-end handset, with the stepped edges (due to the wrap around back) adding a pleasing detail, and the expansive, massive and vibrant screen speaking for itself. The curved edges also make the device feel even thinner than it is and makes it very comfortable to hold.

Around the back everything is also pretty good, until one gets to the camera module, whose design I just can’t agree with. Ignoring that however I am otherwise perfectly happy.

The handset is impressively thin and light, and in those terms feels like a huge upgrade from the Lumia 930.

Mehedi’s impressions of the Lumia 950 XL

Mehedi also received his Lumia 950 XL this week and had a blast with his device. It convinced him to make the switch from Android to Windows full-time rather than using it as a part -time device. Our review of the 950 XL is coming soon, so expect to see our full thoughts on the 950 XL and Windows 10 Mobile next week.

 I always loved the minimalism of Windows Phone. With Windows 10, Microsoft made Windows Phone look a lot better. Sure, things need some polish – but the OS is really nice overall.

The Lumia 950 XL provided a decent experience so far. The battery on the device is fantastic, and the display looks really nice. Other features like Windows Hello need some work, but it’s nice to see Microsoft doing something different, rather than following Apple or Samsung and putting a fingerprint scanner. To be fair, though, I would actually prefer a fingerprint scanner rather than the Iris scanner on the Lumia.

Have anything else to discuss not covered above? Feel free to go as off-topic as you like in the comments below!

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